April 30, 2010
Stockton, Calif. - Dylan Floro and David Hurlbut combined to three-hit the Tigers and Christian Colon drove home two as No. 13 Cal State Fullerton defeated Pacific, 6-2, in a Big West Conference meeting at Klein Family Field Friday night.
The Titans win their eighth in a row and and 14th in their last 16 games and improve to 26-13 overall and 11-2 in Big West Conference play. while the Tigers fall to 25-15, 7-6. Fullerton increases to a 2.5 game lead over UC Irvine who is playing a non-conference series with Cal State Bakersfield, and to a 4.0-game lead over third place Pacific in the league standings.
The freshman Floro, making his first career start after 18 relief appearances this year, was dominant until two outs into the eighth before a fielding miscue led to a pair of Tiger runs. He retired 17 of the first 18 batters he faced, and 13 in a row from the second to the sixth innings before hitting Matt Fuson with a pitch with an out in the sixth. The right-hander, forced into action with the lingering absence of Noe Ramirez (fractured wrist), had a career night by hurling 7.2 innings of three-hit ball, allowing just two unearned runs while striking out eight to earn the win and improve to 3-0. Hurlbut tossed perfect 1.1 innings and picked up a strikeout in relief of Floro.
Pacific starter Marcus Pointer (6-3) was touched for six runs on 11 hits over 7.0 innings of work to take the loss.
Nick Ramirez singled in the second inning to extend his hitting streak to 18 games, but the Titans wouldn't put any numbers on the board until the top of the third.
Third baseman Richie Pedroza led of the top of the third with a double that landed just inside the right field line and came around to score on Christian Colon's single to left. With Colon on second after the throw to the plate by the left fielder, and after a popped up bunt by Gary Brown, Carlos Lopez singled home Colon with a seeing-eye single up the middle. Tyler Pill drove home the third run of the inning when he drilled a double off the right field wall that scored Lopez all the way from first.
The Titans didn't stop in the fourth, scoring two more times after loading the bases off Pointer. Billy Marcoe was hit by a pitch, Nick Ramirez singled for the second time in the game and Joey Siddons, attempting to move runners over, reached on an error by the third baseman Mike Walker to load the bases.
Pedroza drove home the Titans' fourth run with his second knock in as many at bats, and Colon added a fifth run with a sacrifice to deep center field.
Pacific finally got something rolling off Floro in the sixth, the Titan righty worked out of it to preserve his bid for a shutout for another inning. After the Titan right-hander plunked Fuson, Nick Longmire double with a chopper over the head of Pedroza at third. Fuson was held up at third. Floro struck out Brett Christopher and used some handy glove work from Joey Siddons, who ran down a deep fly ball on thwarting track, to end the treat without a run crossing the plate.
Fullerton picked up a sixth unanswered run in the top of the seventh as Corey Jones belted his fifth home run of the season to right off Pointer.
In the eighth, Floro was his own enemy. After two quick outs, Fuson tried bunting for a single, but Floro was unable to grab the handle, allowing Fuson to reach on the error. Longmire promptly doubled again, this time by center fielder Gary Brown, scoring Fuson all the way from first. Longmire stole third and then scored the second unearned run of the inning on a Floro wild pitch which was also ball four to Christopher. The walk ended Floro's night and he handed the ball to the lefty Hurlbut who retired Brian Martin to end the rally.
Ramirez led all players with three hits on the night with Pedroza in tow with two. Pedroza has now reached base safely in 15 of his last 21 plate appearances dating back to his pinch hit in the Saturday game at UC Santa Barbara, Apr. 17.
JB Brown had the only other Pacific hit.
The two teams will met up again tomorrow night at Klein Family Field at 6 p.m. RHP Daniel Renken (6-2, 4.47 ERA) will be on the mound for Cal State Fullerton. Pacific will counter with LHP David Rowse (7-0, 4.57 ERA).